Petition launched to ban Fujitsu from holding government contracts

"We don't want Fujitsu anywhere near our public services"

Fujitsu building

Public anger over the Post Office sub-postmasters scandal hasn’t abated. After the ITV drama Mr Bates vs the Post Office brought the issue back into the public consciousness, the government has faced pressure to provide remedy for those wrongfully convicted and ensure that similar scandals are prevented from happening in the future.

The technology firm Fujitsu was responsible for developing the Horizon IT system. Faults in the Horizon system caused discrepancies in branch accounts which were not due to the actions of postmasters.

As a result of this, campaigners are now calling for Fujitsu to be banned from holding public sector contracts in the UK.

Anti-privatisation group We Own It has launched a petition which reads: “Fujitsu should never receive another public sector contract and should be removed immediately from the government’s list of Strategic Suppliers.”

Speaking on the launch of the petition, Cat Hobbs, director of We Own It told Left Foot Forward: “It beggars belief that Fujitsu still has contracts with the Post Office and other key government departments after a catalogue of astonishing failures.

“Fujitsu isn’t just one rotten apple. Look at what happened with Carillion collapsing causing chaos, Serco’s £37 billion failed test and trace scheme or G4S letting down the London Olympics.

“The government should not be outsourcing contracts to run our vital services and awarding them to the lowest bidder. The priority for outsourcing companies is to make a profit for their owners, not delivering a public service.

“That’s why over 13,000 of us have already sent a crystal clear message to government – we don’t want Fujitsu anywhere near our public services.”

Fujitsu has been awarded £6.8 billion worth of contracts by the government since 2012. During Rishi Sunak’s time as chancellor and then prime minister, the firm has had £3.6 billion worth of joint or solo contracts.

At the time of writing, more than 13,000 people have signed We Own It’s petition.

Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward

Image credit: JiriMatejicek – Creative Commons

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